Schodack CSD would like to share an update on the district’s school budget process and the impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had.

The Board of Education is waiting until May to adopt a 2020-21 budget as New York State has delayed school budget votes until at least June 1. By waiting to adopt a budget, the district will have a better sense of how deep funding cuts to education may be next year.

The state budget adopted in April freezes Foundation Aid, the largest category of state aid that supports general education programming, at last year’s level.

Additionally, New York State may cut state spending further depending on how state revenues and expenditures look during the year. Governor Andrew Cuomo said just this past week that education aid cuts could be significant. The state will examine three measurement periods, the first ending April 30. After that date, the state will determine if additional cuts are necessary and school districts will have a better understanding of next year’s revenues.

During these difficult financial times, Schodack CSD’s primary budgetary goal is to preserve as many student programs and supports as possible. Additions to the budget that the district had hoped to include will be removed given the reality of New York State’s budget deficit caused by the health crisis impact on the economy.

If funding is cut further later this year after the measurement periods, Schodack CSD plans to use reserve funds to offset the revenue losses in an effort to preserve as much as possible.

We will continue to update our community in the weeks ahead as we learn the results of the first potential rounds of state aid cuts and adopt a school budget in May. Community members can also phone in to the next Board of Education meeting, which is scheduled for Thursday, May 7 at 6:00 p.m.